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How Do You Tenderize Skirt Steak?

How Do You Tenderize Skirt Steak?

Cooking can get overly complicated despite how enjoyable it is. There are things to be done before, during, and after the cooking process, which helps you get your food all good and ready to eat.

One thing that falls under this category is tenderizing, a process that is done before cooking the food.

People will tenderize all types of meat, which includes skirt steak. In this article, we will go into what skirt steak and tenderizing are before finally going into the top three ways to tenderize your meat.

By the end of the article, you will know exactly how to tenderize skirt steak.

What Is Skirt Steak?

A skirt steak is a cut of beef, and there are two cuts: the inside and outside skirt.

To be specific, the skirt steak comes from the area that runs across the muscles in cows. This cut is also very long and can be as long as 20 to 24 inches in some cases.

Since it comes from the muscle, you can imagine that it is very tough. Both types of skirt steak are on the tough side.

Of course, there are ways to make them more tender, which we are going to cover later on in this article!

What Is Tenderizing?

It is important that you understand what tenderizing is and exactly why it is done to food. When you are tenderizing meat, you break down the connective tissue to make it easier to chew and cut.

This method is perfect for people who love to eat tender meat and do not struggle with their food.

The type of people this is not for is those who like their meat, though. Hey, nothing wrong with liking something on the chewy and tough side!

How to Tenderize Skirt Steak

There are a couple of ways you can tenderize skirt steak. In this section, you will learn about using a meat mallet, marinating it, and using salt.


Using a mallet is one of the quickest ways to tenderize your meat. All you need is a cutting board, plastic bag, or plastic wrap, and of course, a meat mallet.

If you do not have the meat mallet, then it defeats the point of this method. Could you use something else? Sure, but you will get the best results with a meat mallet.

  • Cover your skirt steak in a plastic bag, plastic wrap, or wax paper to stop the juice from spraying everywhere.
  • Next, put the meat on the cutting board and grab your mallet. You are ready to start pounding the meat.
  • Start pounding away at the skirt steak. You do not want to hit it too hard or for too long because this type of steak is already on the thin side. Hitting it too hard will end up ruining it.
  • Once you are done, take the skirt steak out of the covering and then get to cooking.

This method is just so easy to use, and it is great for people who are short on time or do not have a lot of extra time on their hands.


The salt method for tenderizing skirt steak is an effective and cheap method that anyone can do.

One thing to keep in mind, however, is that you do not want to use regular table salt because it will cause the meat to taste weird. What you want to do is use kosher or sea salt.

  • Place the steak on a cutting board or plate.
  • Start sprinkling the salt over the meat and leave it to sit for around an hour or so. Make sure you salt both sides of the steak too, so it is coated evenly.
  • Once the hour is up, rinse off the rest of the salt and then dry it with a paper towel.
  • Now you can get to the best part, which is cooking the skirt steak up!

You should make sure that you do not add any more salt while you are cooking or when you are about it eat it. It already has enough salt from the tenderizing process that you did earlier.

Besides using the meat mallet, this is a very quick way to tenderize your skirt state. All it takes is an hour, and then bam! It’s ready to be cooked up on the stove, grill, oven, etc.


If you are using a marinade to tenderize your skirt steak, then you are soaking your meat in some kind of liquid with acid in it.

Common marinades are wine, lemon juice, vinegar, beer, and lime, to name a few options. Use whatever type of marinade you feel comfortable using or happen to have on hand at the time of cooking.

  • The first step is placing the skirt steak in a container before pouring the marinade over it. Make sure both sides get soaked in the marinade as well, so it evens out.
  • Put the steak in the fridge and leave it in there for a minimum of an hour and a maximum of twenty-four hours. Do not leave it in there for longer than a day.
  • Take the steak out of the fridge and then start cooking it with whatever method you prefer to cook your skirt steak.

Out of all the methods we listed in this article, this is the one that takes the longest, depending on how long you marinade for.

Still, it’s worth using because the marinade will infuse into the meat, so when you bite into it, you will end up with the juiciest and tastiest cut of meat.

Final Thoughts

And there you go, all you skirt steak lovers out there! Once we explained what skirt steak and tenderizing were, we went into the top three ways to tenderize it in the first place.

You will see that tenderizing is a great way to make your meat soft and tender. It will be like the meat is melting right in your mouth!

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